The ultimate ab workout, according to a top celebrity personal trainer
Abs are made in the kitchen, but you also need to train them in the gym.
Long gone are the days when people thought you could spot-reduce fat from around your midsection by simply performing a couple of sit-ups. The best method for revealing your abs is to lose body fat.
For true weight loss, you firstly need to be in a calorie deficit. This involves consuming less energy from food than you need to sustain your weight.
As an example, if 2,000 calories maintains your weight, 1,800-1,900 should be sufficient to start shedding that stubborn fat.
However, you still need to put your abs through their paces at the gym. Training a muscle with weight and resistance will increase its size and cross-sectional area. Combined with reduced body fat, this is the most effective method for getting ripped.
But which ab exercises are the best? JOE spoke to Bradley Simmonds, a former professional footballer who is now personal trainer to a long list of celebrities.
According to Simmonds, the best ab workout combines the most effective core exercises into a wider HIIT (high-intensity interval training) session.
"Performing hundreds of sit ups and planking for hours on end unfortunately won't shred that stubborn belly fat," Simmonds says.
"These types of exercises will improve your core strength and certainly increase definition - but if you want to lose fat in that area, you need to consume fewer calories or perform exercises that increase your heart rate to be in a calorie deficit."
Simmonds, who has counted top Premier League footballers amongst his clients, has outlined a HIIT ab workout to help you blast away body fat.
Perform each exercise for 40 seconds, followed by a 20 second rest period. Once all five are completed, that is one round. Complete five rounds for the full ab workout.
- Mountain climbers
- Jack knives
- Bicycle crunches
Simmonds is keen to stress time spent working out is futile if your diet doesn't change.
"Being healthy doesn't have to be complicated. I always say diet and exercise go hand in hand, so it's important to keep an eye on your nutrition alongside your workout routine.
"Contrary to what some believe, snacking can be a part of that but it's about making the right choices.
"Swap out quick fixes for nutrient-dense snacks bursting with natural goodness, vitamins and minerals such as a handful of almonds or a banana."